Pencils in Community – Brandon Bledsoe

This is the third in a series of posts called “Pencils in Community”, where I share the stories of other people in the pencil world alongside me. Today’s guest is Brandon Bledsoe, a fellow blogger, and someone I met through the Erasable Podcast Facebook group. 

Introduction

I am Brandon Bledsoe and I write Analog Savage.  I was in the army from 2005-2011 as a combat medic.  I now study history, play with my kids, and collect whatever suits me at the moment, with stamps and pencils being constants.

What pencil made you fall in love with pencils?

I am not sure that I ever noticed falling in love with pencils.  My grandfather always had a carpenters pencil in the front of his overalls that he sharpened with a pocket knife, and the stairs in his basement had an old hand crank sharpener.  In kindergarten and the few times we went there after school I always remember dreading to use that old sharpener.  It worked, but it was just kind of old to a kid.  One time I forgot my pencil at school and I remember thinking it weird that I had to use his carpenters pencil.  After that I just always made sure I had pencils.  Even before I really collected or explored pencils I always made sure there was a box of ticonderogas in the house.

What is your current favorite pencil?

My current favorite pencil is the Blackwing 24.  It has the nice blackwing feel and graphite, but if firm enough for some decent writing time.

What is your go-to pencil?

My go to, is a Ticonderoga, they are affordable and will always be my baseline.

What do you say to people who don’t know about this whole world of pencils that are curious about it?

For people who are curious about the pencil world firstly I give them a starter bundle, second I tell them to get into the groups and make sure to shop small (CW first, big sellers second) when possible.   I Hook them up with some blogs, mine first 🙂

Strangest reaction you’ve had to you being a “pencil person”

 I don’t know that I’ve had a strange reaction, but I have some common ones and a few good stories.
The usual reaction is something along the lines of “I didn’t know there was all that much to know about pencils,” or “how is it possible to be a pencil snob.”  I get that a lot.  It never occurs to people that with the exception of art pencils, that ticonderoga isn’t as good as it gets.  As for the stories about people finding out.
     Firstly, my best friend Carl was at my house and I pulled out my pencil, and forgetting that he was there, I smelled it.  I realized that he had watched me do it and so I held it out to him.  He said, “yep.  That’s a #2 pencil.”  He was cool with it.
     Secondly my friend Allie found out in a history class and it drove her crazy.  Word spread throughout the class and the day came for us to fill in an exam that had to be in pencil.  The professor forgot the pencils and he looked at me.  Allie said, “don’t.  I’ll take a zero if you don’t do it.”  He said, “Brandon, do you have enough pencils for the entire class?”   I grabbed my locking pencil case and jumped up shouting “my day had come!”
If you would like to have your story of how you discovered the pencil world featured here, send me an email at newkindofpencil@gmail.com

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